SFF.Network [SFF Network] Gigabyte Launches the GA-X150M-Plus WS... and Forgets the Rear IO?

One of the weirder boards to be launched at CES this year is Gigabyte's GA-X150M-Plus WS. This M-ATX motherboard features socket 1151 with the Intel C232 chipset (which Gigabyte has decided to call X150 for some unknown reason), dual DDR4 DIMM slots and a high quality audio solution.

Also featured is a Realtek GbE LAN chipset, which supports cFosSpeed, a network traffic management application which Gigabyte claims to help improve network latency, maintain low ping times to delivery better responsiveness in a crowded LAN environments. Gigabyte also states that the Realtek GbE NIC consumes significant less power when it’s in idle state in comparison with others.

Read more here.
 

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King of Cable Management
Sep 26, 2015
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It looks like they are using the full compliment of USB ports with 4 USB 3.0 and 2 USB 2.0 on the rear I/O panel and a USB 3.0 and 2 USB 2.0 headers on the board. They are also using all six SATA III ports from the chipset, too. PCI-e lanes, however, are not being fully utilized...maybe a lack of space and cheap power distribution is to blame?

It is interesting that they completely removed any display ports on the real I/O panel. Some of the E3 processors do have integrated graphics on them.
 

confusis

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On a WS board I would hope to see a 2nd NIC, maybe full 7.1 audio, dunno. It just seems to be very sparse on the rear IO :/
 

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King of Cable Management
Sep 26, 2015
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Outside the a few dissimilarities here and there, it actually looks quite close to the MSI H170 Eco



So, I would think a lot of the design of the Gigabyte board was also intended to reduce power consumption of the motherboard itself.
 

Vittra

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May 11, 2015
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It looks like they are using the full compliment of USB ports with 4 USB 3.0 and 2 USB 2.0 on the rear I/O panel and a USB 3.0 and 2 USB 2.0 headers on the board. They are also using all six SATA III ports from the chipset, too. PCI-e lanes, however, are not being fully utilized...maybe a lack of space and cheap power distribution is to blame?

It is interesting that they completely removed any display ports on the real I/O panel. Some of the E3 processors do have integrated graphics on them.

While some Xeons have iGPUs, I've only seen Supermicro ATX boards on C236 that have proper video out to utilize it. When last I looked, I wasn't able to find any worthwhile mitx or atx boards with them. Intel's stance on this seems to be that the iGPU is for virtualization purposes and not necessarily to be used by the host.. and manufacturers appear to be agreeing.

This board probably fits that power consumption conscious niche. In contrast, Asrock and Asus have gaming oriented C232 boards approaching, and there have been screenshots and information passed along on asian sites showing OCs achieved on Xeon V5 processors on a yet unannounced Asrock board. Since it'll be through BCLK, it bares mention that OCing would come at the cost of all power saving features.
 

Aibohphobia

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Feb 22, 2015
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In typical Gigabyte fashion the SYS_FAN header is 4-pin but voltage control only.
 

Phuncz

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Also featured is a Realtek GbE LAN chipset, which supports cFosSpeed, a network traffic management application which Gigabyte claims to help improve network latency, maintain low ping times to delivery better responsiveness in a crowded LAN environments. Gigabyte also states that the Realtek GbE NIC consumes significant less power when it’s in idle state in comparison with others.
How they might wrap it, it's still another crappy Realtek NIC.

http://ark.intel.com/products/82185/Intel-Ethernet-Connection-I219-LM
0.5W seems low enough for me, below 5W I personally wouldn't even care.

The only reason for an OEM to go with Realtek over the much more reliable and performing solutions from Intel or Atheros, is price. cFosSpeed is just another bloatware app that is supposed to do QoS, but it only does this over your PC connection (so not your internet connection where it matters) and it uses CPU load for this. Any decent router does this properly. My router has a real-time application setting for the Netflix devices and a background task for servers, meaning my games are not ever throttled because of downloads, but Netflix gets priority so that even if my gaming PC is downloading some new game, it still doesn't hurt the streaming. And when do you ever fully saturate a Gbit port while needing to online game ? If one can afford a NAS, one can afford a router with QoS and read a guide.